John Paul Caponigro is digitally printing his father's famous print, White Deer. It's an image I've always loved. While taking a class at John Paul's studio, we got to meet Paul and talk about his print. We learned from about the many steps it took to make this print in the darkroom.
Click on the link below to read what both John Paul and Paul have to say about it.
The digital print is available on John Paul's website: http://www.johnpaulcaponigro.com/store/RunningWhiteDeerPaulCaponigro.php
I've been stalking the apapane that sing in the forest around our house in Volcano. Finally, one graced me with a good shot.
I'm working on a portrait of Roshi (Robert Aitken). On his 91st birthday I took a photo of him before lunch. The lighting in the zendo is very bad and it's almost impossible to get a good shot without artificial light.
I'm taking a class from David Julian and was inspired to do a composite to make a better portrait. I added a stone background so to give the appearance of a mountain cave. At his right shoulder is Kwan Yin. I took a photo of a painting in his residence and manipulated it. Inscribed in the rock is the Heart Sutra.
It's a good thing I'm playing catch up. Since I'm not doing anything exciting right now, it gives me an opportunity to write about other things.
This summer, I took some time off to go to a photo retreat at Zen Mountain Monastery. It's location is Mount Tremper in the Catskills in New York State. The abbot there is John Daido Loori. He trained under Minor White, one of the great masters in photography. His training with Minor White opened the world of spiritual seeking and zen. Daido Roshi's book, The Eight Gates of Zen, is the book piqued my interest in zen.
The monastery is an old Christian monastery in a beautiful setting. The schedule was to sit zazen every morning from 6 - 8 AM. Then there was work practice for a couple of hours. Daido Roshi gave a talk in the afternoon before sending us off on a photo assignment. After dinner, there was zazen until 9 PM and then lights out. The schedule was very much like sesshin or a zen retreat.
I was drawn to the monastery's cemetery, Nirvana Forest. A lovely, peaceful place surrounded by pines. The grave markers were simple wood as you would find in temples in Japan. Taizan Maezumi's stupa is there. An article on the ZMM site says that the first creature buried in the cemetery was a dog.
Here is a link to photographs...in the forest, at the cemetery.
My friend, Brian Powers, who lives in Kona has a plane, takes amazing photos like this one of a humpback whale and its calf.
One day, he offered to take me up so I could take some photos. Yeah, right. He didn't tell me that he shot from a hole about the size of my fist on the pilot side of the cockpit. We had to change seats in mid-flight and I tried to get my camera steady enough to shoot through this little opening. I got nothing.
Please check out his website. I have no idea how he does it as he goes up by himself most of the time.
He's also an excellent writer and should have a blog. His life is wild.
I'm so excited...one of my prints was accepted in the Dreams Show at the Honolulu International Country Club.
I took the photograph in Hilo when I was with good friends and fellow photographers: Kathy Beal, Jim Bazin (too busy selling his beautiful prints to have a site), Ken Carl, and the famous Katie and David Parquet. Nothing like taking photographs with your art sangha.
If you have time to drop by (and you live on Oahu), the show runs from September 10 - November 5 at the Honolulu International Country Club. The opening reception is on September 10 from 6 - 9 PM and we're allowed to invite our friends (if you're reading this blog, you're automatically a friend).
Here is something from David Allen's blog that I enjoyed and wanted to share. I believe it can be applied to all the arts and certainly to photography. Editing is a most important step in the creative process, but first you must have something to prune. It reminds me to keep shooting no matter what.
"It's all about pruning...
Decompressing from a nonstop day on this cool Ojai evening, pinching the new growth off the ends of a couple of my bonsai, I'm catching the seed of what's got to be another major theme to understand and hone and, well - prune. Editing is where the action is. Many an author and screenwriter I've met confirm this.
So, what's the life/work equivalent of that germ of creative truth? Creativity is. Can't help it - anything alive grows. But that growth can take on meta-natural proportion when it is facilitated...by what? Pruning. Take the sentence down to half its words. Cut the dead wood out of your team. Unhook from the non-mission-critical projects.
The first thing is to have something to prune. Then, it's the ever-graceful dance of taking away that which is growing haphazard to allow the essence of the life form artistry to unfold and come to conscious expression. Or something like that..."
If you're on a Mac running OSX and you don't use Quicksilver, you're missing out on a fabulous productivity tool. It's also fun to figure out. It's a launcher for applications and so much more. When you find a new use for it, it can just make your day. I'm having a very geeky week. It's a free download and that's the amazing part: http://quicksilver.blacktree.com/